LAND OWNERSHIP BY FILIPINOS OVERSEAS
|There are various
considerations in the ownership of private lands in the Philippines by Filipinos, who have
chosen to become naturalized citizens of another country.
As provided for in Section 15 of Article XIV of the 1987 Philippine Constitution and Batas
Pambansa Blg. 185, the transfer (acquisition through voluntary or involuntary sale, devise
or donation) of such land to Filipinos, who have renounced their Philippine citizenship,
must be for residential purposes only.
Among the common questions raised regarding land ownership, as embodied in the above
mentioned statutes, are the following:
1.) Can a Filipino, who has lost his
Philippine citizenship, own land in the
Yes, A natural-born Filipino, who has become a naturalized citizen of another
country, and who has the legal capacity to enter into a contract under Philippine laws,
may acquire or be a transferee of private lands in the Philippines.
2.) What are the conditions and limitations
of such land transfer or ownership?
The transferee must not use the land acquired
for any purpose other than for his residence. The transferee is entitled to acquire and
own private land up to a maximum area of one thousand (1,000) square meters in the case of
urban land, or one (1) hectare in the case of rural land.
In the case of married couple, any one or both of them may avail of the said privilege,
provided that if both avail of the same, the total area of land shall not exceed the
allowed maximum limit.
In the case the transferee already owns urban or rural lands for residential purposes, he
may still be entitled to be a transferee of additional urban or rural lands, provided that
the total land area already owned by him, will not exceed the allowed maximum limit.
The transferee may acquire not more than two (2) lots, which may be situated in different
municipalities throughout the Philippines, provided that the total areas of the two (2)
lots shall not exceed the allowed maximum limit. A transferee who has already acquired the
maximum limit of urban land is already disqualified from acquiring rural land, and vice
3.) What are the requirements in the
registration of titles to lands?
In addition to the requirements provided for
in other laws for the registration of titles to lands, the transferee will have to submit
to the Register of Deeds of the province or city, where the property is located, a sworn
statement showing the following information: date and place of his birth; names and
addresses of his parents, of his spouse, and children; area, location, and mode of
acquisition of his landholdings in the Philippines, if any; intention to reside
permanently in the Philippines; date he lost his Philippine citizenship; and country of
which he is presently a citizen.
4.) How can an individual acquire a
landholding under the provisions of BP Blg. 185?
A transferee who violates the provisions of BP
Blg. 185 through any misrepresentation in his sworn declaration; fraudulent acquisition of
the landholdings; and failure to reside permanently on the land acquired within two (2)
years from the date of acquisition, except when such failure is caused by force majeure,
shall be penalized by: forfeiture of such lands and the improvements thereon in favor of
the National Government through escheat proceedings to be initiated by the Solicitor
General or his representative; liability to prosecution under the applicable provision of
the Revised Penal Code and shall be subject to deportation proceedings; forever be barred
from availing of the privilege granted under Batas Pambansa Blg. 185.
Department of Justice